Friday, February 25, 2011

bag of tricks

There are several tools I've learned from various riding instructors who have taught me. One of my favourites is posting to a canter. I didn't learn this until I went to University. It makes perfect sense and as soon as I learned about it, I started using this as an additional tool to get my horses canter right where I wanted it to be.

Then I took a lesson outside of my University's equestrian team and my instructor saw me posting to the canter while warming up and basically asked me what the devil I was doing. According to this instructor, posting to the canter is ridiculous, not effective, and looks stupid. Ever since then I kind of gave up on it. This was a well known trainer and their opinion mattered greatly to me. If this trainer thought it was stupid, it probably was stupid.

This afternoon I was watching some warm-up videos from WEG and to my surprise, one of the riders was filmed warming his horse up at the canter and is very clearly posting.

I was like, huh. If a WEG competitor does it, chances are it's not that stupid afterall.

If you think about it, your seat is an aid. Ideally, any aid (leg, hands, voice, etc) is to be used lightly and though it's important to be consistent, overuse of an aid will cause the horse to tune it out. Following that theory, posting at the canter should technically improve your horses response to your seat when you are in fact sitting on him, right?

Just something to consider. I might do some experimenting with Lucy tomorrow when I ride to see if that helps her regulate her stride a bit more. She is very sensitive and responsive through her back so this might work well for her.

Here's a short video from last night:

Going to the right she was a little bit nutty but sadly my video camera's battery died before we got there. I was so happy, too, thinking it was all caught on camera! Boo :(

1 comment:

  1. It's not silly at all. It can help slow the canter down, when the rider is focusing on maintaining two-beat speed in a three-beat gait, because it enables you to slow your body down, which then encourages the horse to slow her body down.

    When Promise was first started under saddle, I used to ask for the trot from canter transition by starting to post in the two-beat speed I wanted her to drop to and then asking with my seat and hands. She was able to learn what I meant first from body language, and later developed an understanding of the seat/hands request.


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